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Bozeman's Efforts to Produce Affordable Housing Yield Hundreds of New Units

Housing Policy + Finance

Bozeman's Efforts to Produce Affordable Housing Yield Hundreds of New Units

Recent policy changes in this Montana city have resulted in the creation of more than 500 affordable housing units

September 15, 2023
Aerial view of Bozeman, Montana, metro area
Image: Jacob / stock.adobe.com

Bozeman officials recently announced that the city has 1,774 housing units in the development pipeline, with 592 of them priced affordably. After Montana outlawed inclusionary zoning, the city shifted toward offering incentives to developers to promote affordable housing, the Bozeman Daily Chronicle reports. 

The city has allowed departures from development standards for projects that include affordable housing and has closed funding gaps with tax increment financing and low-income housing tax credits. Thus far, city officials say those changes are making a positive impact on the metro’s housing market, one they hope will provide long-term affordable housing solutions for residents who need it most.

[David] Fine said the city’s efforts are providing results. He shared details of 11 project proposals that he said wouldn’t exist without the affordable housing programs, either using the city’s new affordable housing ordinance, incentivized departures from development codes or TIF and LIHTC dollars.

The 11 projects, which include entirely affordable developments, like the North Third Apartments, and other proposals where developers are planning to use the city’s “shallow incentives” for affordability, which allow them to make some deviations from city code in exchange for affordable units.

Overall, Fine said the 11 projects are set to yield 1,774 new units overall, 592 of which are set to be priced affordably long-term. Fine noted after the meeting there are many other units being built separate from city efforts.

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